The weather has been unpredictable lately — snowy and cold one day then slushy and warm the next. Regardless of the temperature, one thing has remained constant, and that’s my desire for soup. The winter months have always made me crave this warm and comforting meal, and that hasn’t changed this year! Their ease and versatility are also a great selling point. I de!ided to start off 2019 with a classic: leek and potato!
Both leeks and potatoes are crops that keep well long after harvest. The farm has settled into a quiet rhythm for these next few months, but we do still have a few veggies kicking around the barn. I rescued a bundle of leeks and a handful of potatoes to pair with leftover veggies from my fridge and then hit the kitchen!
When preparing the potatoes, I washed them thoroughly then removed any eyes and marks, otherwise leaving the skin intact. As with many fruits and vegetables, the skin houses the majority of the nutrients, particularly the fibre! When it comes to leeks, many consumers are not aware of their nutrition content. Are you? Just in case, I’ll fill you in! Leeks contain an incredibly high amount of Vitamin K, a fat-soluble vitamin that helps our bodies heal wounds, and maintain the health of blood vessels and bones. Because it’s fat-soluble, it’s best absorbed when paired with fat. In this recipe, both the butter and the milk/cream contribute fat. Pretty neat, hey?
Overall, this soup is flavourful, creamy, and satisfying. It makes the perfect lunch for a chilly weekend, or a quick and easy dinner for those busy weeknights. Give it a try and let me know what you think!
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cooking Time: 25 minutes
Makes: 4 – 6 servings
1 tablespoon cooking oil or butter
3 large leeks*, white parts sliced into coins
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 bell pepper, diced
1 large carrot, diced (or 1 cup frozen diced carrots)
2 stalks celery, diced
½ teaspoon paprika
½ teaspoon dried thyme
¼ teaspoon pepper
¼ teaspoon salt
4 cups low-sodium vegetable stock
4 medium potatoes, cubed
½ cup milk or cream
Heat oil or butter in a medium stock pot over medium heat. Add one small piece of leek and wait for it to start to sizzle.
Once sizzling, add the rest of the sliced leeks. Cook for 3 minutes or so, stirring frequently, until leeks are softened.
Add minced garlic and other diced vegetables. Cook for another 3-4 minutes, again stirring frequently.
Next, add herbs and spices, mixing until all vegetables are evenly coated. Cook for another 1-2 minutes.
Add the vegetable stock and the potatoes and bring to a boil. Once boiling, reduce heat to medium-low (maintaining a gentle simmer) and cook for approximately 20 minutes.
Once potatoes are softened, remove soup from heat. Blend the soup using an immersion blender or upright blender until a creamy consistency is achieved. Add the milk or cream and stir to combine.
*Be sure to wash the leeks very thoroughly, as although they are pre-washed before being sold, dirt has a way of working its way inside of this tasty veggie!
Recipe created by Alex Chesney, RD